Monday, October 14, 2013

Process Re-design, Challenge #03

Re-design Around Roles, Not Persons

Democracy is the process by which people choose the man who'll get the blame.
~Bertrand Russell 


In many business process re-design projects, there is a strong temptation to start re-thinking the processes while having an eye at your current employees as process actors, in terms of capabilities, possible performance considerations, possible conflicts of interest, possible personality clashes etc.

This is the wrong way to go, because you will be designing your new process around specific people or personality traits and this kind of structure is guaranteed to be unstable.

Rather, once the ideal process sequence is established, think hard about the ideal roles that should perform the process activities: how does information flow most naturally (i.e. with the least waste) to their role? how do they get the authority to perform those steps? how are their organizational objectives aligned with the process objectives?

In a smart process, work must occur where it makes most sense.